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Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park

Adventure abounds at Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park! Tour the historic underground mine or high energy physics lab, take a boat out or cast a line on Lake Vermilion, or hike through acres of old growth pine forest. The addition of nearly 3000 acres and five miles of Lake Vermilion shoreline in 2010 will no doubt add even more opportunities to experience the wonders of northern Minnesota.

Tell me more about this park's wildlife, history, geology and landscape.

Visitor Alert!

Underground Mine Tours Remain Open Weekends in October

If you were unable to join us during the summer, it is not too late. Mine and lab tours will run the following days in October -- 3rd, 4th, 10th, 11th, 16th, 17th, 18th. The mine tours run hourly from 10 am to 4 pm and the lab tour runs at noon only. Some tickets are available for reservations, but we also hold some tickets for first come, first served patrons.

The historic entrance will be open during regular tour times. Please use and follow the historic Soudan Underground Mine Tour signs along Hwy 169 and the following street address if using GPS: 1302 McKinley Park Road Soudan, MN 55782. See below for additional tour information.


Vermilion Park Drive on the east side of the park is now closed weekdays to accommodate campground construction. The road will open at 5 p.m. each Friday and remain open through the weekend for public access into the Armstrong Bay day use area. Lake access to the day use area by boat remains unrestricted.

Note this is a separate access from the historic underground mine tours.

Learn what's ahead for the new Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park and watch the campground groundbreaking
Video: Groundbreaking, and what's ahead for the park.

Some trails will also be closed due to construction. Refer to the park map or call the park office for more information. Map of proposed development.

Safety Precautions: You are likely to encounter construction traffic in the park while it is under development. Please drive carefully around construction sites and vehicles, and follow all construction closures and detour signs.

Deer hunt in November

There will be a deer hunt in Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park on November 28 through December 13 for muzzleloader season. The park will be open to visitors and hunters with a valid special hunt permit during the deer hunt.

For more information: state parks during fall hunting season.

(Updated Oct. 14, 2015)

Park Notes

Be fascinated. Check out the naturalist programs and other activities scheduled at the park.

Underground Mine Tours:

Celebrating 50 Years of Underground Mine Tours!

Slip on a hard hat and travel a half mile underground on one of these tours of Minnesota's first iron ore mine. Experience the life of a miner from the last century, or go high tech with a visit to the high energy physics lab.

Public tours run daily through September and weekends in October through the annual Education Minnesota conference. Group and educational tours are also available.

Learn more about underground mine tours.

Vehicle Permits:

Vehicle permits are required at Lake Vermilion-Soudan Underground Mine State Park except for the main parking lot of the visitor center at the mine. Vehicle permits are available for purchase at the gift shop in the visitor center.

Virtual Tours:

Take a virtual tour. It's a great tool to help you plan your next trip to the park!

Panoramic tour | Snapshot tour
Panoramic mine tour | Video mine tour | Audio mine tours

White Nose Bat Syndrome:

A fungus dangerous to bats has been confirmed at the park. This fungus is known to cause white-nose syndrome (WNS), a disease that is harmful and mostly fatal to hibernating bats, and has decimated bat populations in the eastern portions of the United States and Canada. The syndrome is transmitted primarily from bat to bat and is not known to pose a threat to humans, pets, livestock or other wildlife.

Public tours of the mine and physics lab are continuing. To help keep the fungus from spreading, visitors are required to walk across special mats designed to remove spores from footwear. Visitors also are advised not to visit other caves or mines with any clothing, footwear or gear they have used in areas where WNS or the associated fungus is present, because washing alone cannot sufficiently disinfect clothing.

Learn more about white-nose syndrome and what you can do to help slow its spread.


Get the park's Call of the Wildflowers cache coordinates. There's also a multi-stage geocache for truly adventurous park visitors – you'll find the starting point at N47 49.243 W 092 14.192.

State Forest Campground:

The park manages one DNR state forest campground - Hinsdale Island - located in Kabetogama State Forest. Camping is first-come, first-served. Hinsdale Island is a remote and rustic campsite area accessible by water only. For more information, contact the park office.
Hinsdale Island campground topo map This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.
Hinsdale Island campground map with driving directions This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.

Don't Move Firewood!

Burning non-local firewood can spread invasive species, and it's against Minnesota state law. Learn more. Always buy your firewood at the park, or from an approved local vendor. Find firewood vendors for the park.

Gift Cards:

Purchase a Minnesota State Parks Gift Card.


Park Bird Checklist This is a PDF file. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to download it.

Park Highlights

tree Mine Tours

tree Historic Site

tree Lake Recreation

tree Excellent Birding

tree Geologic Formations

tree Wildlife Watching


Best time to contact the park:
May - September: Daily, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
October - April: Weekdays, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


Summer Mine Entrance: 1302 McKinley Park Road

Winter Mine Entrance: 1379 Stuntz Bay Road, Soudan, 55782

Mailing address: P.O. Box 335, 1379 Stuntz Bay Road, Soudan, MN 55782

tel: 218-300-7000

fax: 218-753-2246

email: lakevermilion-soudan.statepark@state.mn.us">lakevermilion-soudan.statepark@state.mn.us

Getting There

Take U.S. Highway 169 toward Ely and follow the signs. Soudan is located two miles east of Tower, MN.